02 May 2008


Last Friday it was about 80 degrees here in Washington.  I had planned to take the afternoon off work to start cooking for Zach's birthday party (15 people coming over for dinner) so I drove into work so I could get home quickly (I really do feel guilty admitting that- I do take metro 99% of the time- really).  I was headed home at around 2, slightly hungry after having a PB&J on a hot dog bun for lunch when I was suddenly struck by the idea that some sushi would be delicious and, as I drove down the hill on Lee Highway, Wasabi came into view. 

I have been to Wasabi downtown, home of a revolving belt sushi and $2 bottles at happy hour, but I had never been to the Wasabi (formerly called Wasabisito) in Virginia. It's a tiny little shop/restaurant with about 6 table and a large refridgerated case for take out where they have sushi rolls, bento boxes, seaweed salad, and little desserts all ready to go, or at least i'm sure they usually do but since I got there after 2, nearly everything was gone. I asked at the counter for a California roll and the (hmmm, I'm not sure that I would call her a chef, but I'm not sure what other word to use) put the roll together with rice, nori, immitation crab meat (that had been tempura fried- an interesting touch) and avocado and proceeded to put my roll on a very strange machine. 

The machine sat on the counter and was shaped like a mini upright piano, with a high back and small flat space, where a piano keyboard would be.  She set my still flat roll down on a small platform and pushed a button and all of a sudden the roll sprang into the air on the platform and two metal bars appeared on each side and shaped the contents into a square log. I had never in my life seen anything like it and my astonishment was rather clear to everyone in the shop. It's a rather cool device, but it seems o me that it takes away something from the sushi, a food that is about balance and having a delicate touch with ingredients, to have it slammed together like that.

Well, no matter how it was made, it was pretty tasty.  It ended up rolled in a very thick sheet of plastic, sort of like a transparency slide, for transportation home so assumed the traditional round shape and it was just was I was looking for for a snack on a very hot afternoon.

Multiple locations in the DC area.

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